19 April, 2011

Green: the Ilmu Giri Pesantren

In Imogiri, Central Java, Indonesia - is the Ilmu Giri Pesantren, an Islamic boarding school that six years ago began offering a new kind of curriculum to a handful of local farmers. Founded by Nasruddin Anshory - students of Islam, young and old and from all over the country, are now flocking to this tiny, mostly outdoor campus to hear him preach on environment and conservation. As a Muslim,” Nasruddin syas, “you have to do something.” And that something is: environmental awareness and action.

In Indonesia, in the 19th Century - Muhammad Syarqawi, a religious scholar and teacher, was concerned by the environmental degradation in the island of Madura off north-eastern Java. The island was dry and there was scarcity of fresh water. Syarqawi set up a small school, Pesantren Guluk-Guluk in Madura in 1887 where he taught the villagers about environmental conservation in an Islamic framework. This was long before anyone paid attention to melting ice caps or rising sea levels or the world started being concerned with environmental issues.

Nasruddin Anshory, a former researcher, established Iimu Giri, an Islamic school devoted to environmental conservation in 2003. The syllabus focuses on environmental conservation in the light of Islamic principles. In recent years Anshory and his school have become increasingly popular. During Ramadan and religious festivals, many people visit Iimu Giri. The UN conference on global climate change held in Bali in December 2007 added to the popularity of Anshory and his school.

+Global Post
+Daily Times